JuJu: Returning to Steelers 'would be a blessing'
"Honestly, it would be a blessing (to return)," Smith-Schuster told reporters, including Dejan Kovacevic of DK Pittsburgh Sports, following the Steelers' wild-card game loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
"I love the city. I love the fans. I love Coach (Mike) Tomlin. I love the coaches and my teammates, players, everyone from the media side to the training room. It's been unbelievable. My career here has been amazing. It would be nice to stay here and play with these guys again and the same coaches. It would be nice to stay for another four years."
Smith-Schuster made a surprising return from a shoulder injury to play in Sunday's 42-21 defeat. The wideout revealed he was given a six-month recovery timeline following his surgery in early October but told himself he'd make it back in three months, according to The Athletic's Mark Kaboly. He added he was advised by his agent not to play.
The 25-year-old is slated to hit free agency this offseason. Smith-Schuster explained he came back in part to show potential suitors that he's healthy but also wanted one final chance to play with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who is expected to retire, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Ray Fittipaldo.
"It meant so much to me," he said, according to Jenna Harner of WPXI. "I knew it was a big risk but there was no hesitation, no doubt I wanted to be out there with No. 7."
Smith-Schuster turned down other clubs to return to the Steelers last offseason. He's recorded 3,855 receiving yards on 323 catches since entering the league in 2017.